by Don Genova, Canadian journalist specializing in writing and broadcasting about food and travel –

www.dongenova.com

We almost always eat olives at room temperature or straight out of the fridge. By gently warming them with some fresh herbs, citrus zest and a little spice, their flavours are released and deepened in this addictive blend.

Ingredients:

– ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

– 2 cups of olives, can be a mixture of brined, oil-cured or dry-cured olives

– 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed with the side of your knife (optional)

– Zest of one orange and one lemon, sliced into julienne strips

– 2 branches of fresh rosemary

– 4 branches of fresh thyme

– ½ tsp. hot red pepper flakes (add more or less to taste)

– Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Warm the olive oil in a large fry pan on medium heat, along with the garlic cloves, if using. When the cloves just begin to brown, remove them with a slotted spoon. Add in all the other ingredients and toss together until the olives have warmed through and the citrus zests have wilted a bit. Remove from heat and transfer to serving dish. Allow to cool a bit before serving. Serve with slices of crusty bread to dip in the oil left in the dish!

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